Friday, December 11, 2009

Smart food: Pistachio-crusted Halibut with spicy yogurt sauce

It's funny how one's priorities and eating habits change when you're expecting a kid. Suddenly my natural inclination for bacon-cheeseburgers and tater tots has to take a back seat to the idea that when you are in your 3rd trimester of pregnancy the developmental benefits of fish are somehow greater than the benefits, both spiritually and developmentally, of cured pork products (personally I'm waiting more scientific research on this subject). Supposedly those fishy omega-3's lead to greater brain development. Hey, if w eating a piece of fish now leads junior later in life to better analyze and explain the differences and merits of bone-in versus boneless rib eye steaks, then I have to get with that parenting program. Besides, we'll have plenty of time to share bacon in the future!!
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Pistachio-crusted Halibut with spicy yogurt sauce
adapted from epicurious
serves 4

This was delicious and incredibly easy and fast to put together. A great last minute meal. Make sure the skillet is fully heated before putting fish in to help prevent sticking.- bb

for halibut:
4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) pieces skinless halibut fillet (about 6 ounces each)
1 cup whole milk
1/3 cup shelled pistachios, finely chopped
3 tablespoons cornmeal
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

for spicy yogurt sauce:
1 cup thick Greek yogurt (8 ounces)
1/2 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and finely diced (3/4 cup)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon dried chili pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Put fish in a shallow baking dish, pour milk over it, and chill, covered, turning over once, 30 minutes. Meanwhile, stir together pistachios and cornmeal in a shallow bowl.

Remove fish from milk, letting excess drip off. Transfer to a plate and sprinkle all over with salt and pepper, then dredge lightly in cornmeal-pistachio mixture. Transfer to a clean plate as coated.

Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté fish, turning over once, until golden and just cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes total.

While fish cooks, stir together all ingredients for spicy yogurt.

Serve fish with spicy yogurt on the side.


Ciao Chow Linda said...

You did a great job with your pistachio covered fish. I made it about a month ago and it was a big mess. Will have to try your recipe.

Shannon said...

I made this for dinner tonight - it was delicious! We loved the spicy sauce.

Cathy - wheresmydamnanswer said...

So impressive - Halibut is a big hit in this house I am looking forward to trying this incredible culinary creation!